Software – Definition, Types, and More

Software – Definition

Software is a computer term that refers to a computer program or set of programs and data, procedures, and guidelines that enable you to perform various tasks on a computer system.

A term commonly used to refer very broadly to programs on a computer device. However, it packs everything intangible into a computer system. It is an English language term accepted by the RAE and does not contain a translation adapted to Spanish.

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What Types of software are There?

In general, different types can be distinguished based on their use or utility:

Software System

It is the program responsible for running all the applications necessary for the proper functioning of a system. This is often confusing with the operating system. It goes further, however, as it also includes optimization tools, device drivers, and servers, among other things.

Programming Software

They are all tools that allow for new development. Therefore, they are usually not used by the end-user but by programmers. It includes to name the most important, the following:
Compiler (programs that analyze and execute other programs)
Interpreters (who “translate” different programming languages)
Text editor (creating and editing text files, programming language, or source code)

Application Software

It is a program project that facilitates certain computer support activities, be they computers, tablets, or mobile phones. Video games, computer-aided design programs (such as CAD) used in telecommunication, education, or business output applications are examples of this kind of program.

Free and Proprietary Software

The concept of free software refers to those programs that allow the user to use, copy, modify and distribute it. For the actions to take effect, the source code must be includ.Some examples are Mozilla Firefox browser, Clam Win Free antivirus, and QCad design assistant.

In contrast to this term, proprietary means that a computer program is not entirely free.

The owner prohibits or restricts its use, redistribution, or modification. In this case, the source code is not include.

Software and Hardware

Both concepts of computers are related. Hardware is the physical elements that make up a computer system (such as the keyboard or CPU). At the same time, the software cannot remain accessed (e.g., an antivirus program or a word processing program) and can perform various functions.
It is an English language term accepting by the RAE and whose translation is not align with Spanish.

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